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THE FRIGHTENERS (1996) 🤩

Don't Fear the Reaper. Night 5 of 13 Nights of Halloween

Do you like scary movies?

It’s time to “be afraid, be very afraid” as SpoilerFreeReviews is dropping 13 spooky movies for fans to enjoy this PSL season. We will be posting our most frightful Halloween favorites over the next 13 spooky nights. So come join us around the fire as we tell our 13 creepy Halloween favorites. 🎃 

Before Peter Jackson made LORD OF THE RINGS, he directed a slew of campy horror films, DEAD ALIVE, BAD TASTE, and the grotesque puppet masterpiece, MEET THE FEEBLES. Yet, his first chance to play with a big budget came in 1996 with the grotesque horror/comedy, THE FRIGHTENERS. 

This gem gets a bad rap because the tone is all over the place, and a big bad (Special Agent Milton Dammers) gets too much screen time. But if you look past those imperfections, you can see why Peter Jackson was the pick to bring LOTR to the big screen.  

It’s a treat watching Michael J. Fox go against type-cast playing the not-so likable Frank Bannister. He’s a conman that uses his ability to see ghosts to trick a small town into paying him a ton of money to exorcise spirits. Adding to the dark fun is the always the over-the-top Jake Busey (Johnny) and R. Lee Ermey spoofing his famous role from FULL METAL JACKET. 

THE FRIGHTENERS can best be compared to the EVIL DEAD series, but with a bigger budget. It’s loud, campy, bloody, and filled to the brim with non-stop action. When I initially saw it in theatres in 1996, I loved it so much that I had the movie poster on my wall. Twenty-five years later, I enjoy returning to see Frank fail trying to make a living through death. 

It’s available to rent on Amazon Prime Video.

Aaron "Dobler" Goldstein

Aaron Goldstein is a Product Manager by day, ludicrous speed content consumer by night. He’s a LA Film School Alumni and TV Academy / Producers Guild of America member. Aaron is a proud stepparent and dad joke enthusiast.

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